Date of Award


Document Type

Union College Only

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Jennifer Currey




fixator, fracture, project, bone, external


Though significant research has been completed regarding fracture healing, the relationship between tissue mechanics and cell differentiation of fracture calluses remains unclear. This relationship could be better understood if a measurable force was applied to the bony ends and the resulting displacement was measured. One way in which this could be done is by means of an external bone fixator and a data acquisition system. Therefore, the concentration of this project was the design and production of an external bone fixator for use in in vivo studies of mice. The project entailed a design process which included using SolidWorks to model the external bone fixator. In addition, a stabilization piece and a fake fracture callus mold were designed. Part of the production phase involved researching and purchasing very small parts including rods, pins, and screws. The main limitation of this project was the size of the fixator. It had to be small enough to attach to the tibia of a mouse, which is about 2cm in length. By the completion of the project, a model of the fixator was built to scale. In future work, the fixator and data acquisition system will be utilized to determine the stiffness of fracture calluses in an attempt to better understand the relationship between mechanics and tissue differentiation. ii